The Catholic Charities Women, Infants and Children (WIC) nutrition program is hosting a Healthy Baby Festival for the first time in Chautauqua County.
The free event for families is set for 10 a.m. to noon Aug. 5 in Washington Park, Washington Avenue and Fifth Street, Dunkirk. Similar events take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday in Delaware Park in Buffalo and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. next Wednesday at Hyde Park in Niagara Falls.
The Dunkirk festival, which includes joining in a worldwide nursing event, is designed to raise awareness around the benefits and significance of breastfeeding. The festival takes place during World Breastfeeding Week – Aug. 1-7 – and helps to create community support for friends, family and others who are or may be considering breastfeeding, or who have breastfed.
The event will be held annually and features prizes and giveaways, entertainment for children and educational displays. Moms are invited to participate in the “Global Big Latch On,” a worldwide nursing event, at 10:30 a.m.
Face painting, Movin’ and Groovin’ and a soccer play area by Soccer Shots are planned for children.
All are encouraged to attend, especially expecting mothers, families and caregivers. Anyone interested in learning more about breastfeeding or in support of the importance of a healthy start for babies are welcome.
“Our Catholic Charities WIC Healthy Baby Festivals are great examples of our entire community coming together to learn about the importance of breastfeeding for the long-term health of both the baby and mother,” Katie Constantino, Catholic Charities WIC breastfeeding coordinator, said in a news release.
The event is funded by Brooks Memorial Hospital. No registration is required for participation. For more information, call 218-1484, Ext. 2207.
Catholic Charities, which for years has administered WIC programs in Erie and Niagara counties, began administering the federally funded WIC program in Chautauqua County last October. Sites are located in Dunkirk, Jamestown, Westfield, Silver Creek and Sherman. For information or an appointment, call 218-1484. For information across the region, visit ccwny.org/wic.
The program served more than 26,000 women and children up to the age of 5 in 20 locations in the three counties last year.